Mitsubishi Electric to Launch Next-generation SiC Inverter for Railcars

Mitsubishi Electric announced today that it will launch a next-generation traction inverter system incorporating large-capacity silicon carbide (SiC) power modules. Compared to Si-based power modules used in current traction inverters, the newly developed SiC power module offers a number of important improvements. In addition to 30% reduced power loss in the traction inverter, inverter size and weight have been reduced by 40% each. The new inverter system also enhances the performance of regenerative brakes, which will lead to producing more regenerative electricity.

Incorporating two 1,700V and 1,200A SiC chips, the new inverter’s high-frequency switching capability also achieves 40% less power loss in the motor. Furthermore, the new inverter emits up to 6dB less noise compared to conventional models. The first commercial application, following a series of ongoing field tests starting January 2012, is expected to be in railcars of Tokyo Metro.

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